In the series finale of The O.C., a flashforward sequence shows

Seth and Summer getting married.

As Summer

is walking down the aisle,

she pokes her tongue out at Seth. For a moment he looks surprised or shocked, then moments later stops, as if he remembered some old in-joke between them, rendering the conventional meaning of the tongue-poke to be moot.

What does this any of this signify? I didn't understand either the supposed meaning of the tongue-poke or Seth's eventual realisation of its true meaning in context.

  • 1
    I had always assumed that it was just Summer being Summer. She was just acting silly at a time that was supposed to be "serious." I think it just showed the playfulness of their relationship. – followthemeow Feb 11 '17 at 22:09
  • @followthemeow: Perhaps so, but his reaction seemed to indicate something more. – Lightness Races with Monica Feb 12 '17 at 13:25

So in googling this I just came across what appears to actually be a scholarly book on the series called "The O.C.: A Critical Understanding" by Lori Bindig and Andrea M. Bergstrom, and the paragraph on it doesn't really answer the question (but in SO parlance I believe it contributes something here) but it addresses it. That paragraph actually cites another book that I don't have access to ATM:

Though Summer's act of sticking her tongue out could be interpreted as a rebellious moment, mocking the traditional gender roles associated with marriage, or viewed as a sign of her former frivolous ways, it is almost inconsequential. Rather, Summer's marriage to Seth resembles a myriad of media texts that depic a women's (sic) greatest achievement as getting married. Thus as Summer's storyline ends, it reflects the hegemonic notion that "no emotional, professional, or political accomplishment can possibly compare with the twin vocations of beauty and marriage" (Zeisler, 2008, p.126)

The Zeisler reference is probably "Feminism and Pop Culture" by Andi Zeisler

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